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Edmundite Missions Senior Center is a rejuvenating and joyous environment that eases the burden for seniors who struggle with poverty. Nearly a quarter of all Selma, Alabama’s seniors are living in poverty, and many also live with chronic disease, as people of lower socioeconomic status are much more likely to develop chronic diseases. For example, they have a 50% higher risk of developing heart disease, leading to shortened life expectancy and lower quality of life.
Our Senior Program works to break that cycle of poverty and chronic diseases by promoting good health, well-being and self-esteem. Each day 30-40 seniors gather at the Center for Hope for a hot meal, daily devotion, exercise, arts and crafts, and other stimulating activities. Activities vary day by day. These daily activities are also live-streamed to our rural sites from the Selma-based Center of Hope, allowing all of our seniors to build larger and more interactive support systems. The staff of the seniors’ program also take the program “on the road,” regularly visiting nursing homes in Selma and the Missions’ rural outreach centers. This brings nutrition and health education, physical and mental fitness, and companionship to many who cannot travel to the Center of Hope.
Through our partnership with HealthLink, a healthcare organization that serves those without medical insurance and also those underinsured, we work to ensure that all of our seniors healthcare needs are met.
The Senior Activity Program helps participating seniors to avoid isolation. The key refrain we hear time and time again is the Missions reminds seniors that they are “not forgotten.” Through our Senior Program, they can be a part of a larger community outside of their family, neighborhood or church leading to longer, happier and fuller lives.